Press release

Seychelles signs bilateral agreement with the EU as part of WTO accession plans

October 24, 2013

Seychelles has successfully concluded bilateral negotiations with the European Union (EU) on trade in goods and services in the context of the accession of the Republic of Seychelles to the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

Countries wanting to join the WTO after it was established in 1995 must negotiate bilateral agreements with major economic powers as part of their entry procedure. These bilateral negotiations lead to specific commitments, concessions and schedules to liberalise trade in goods and services. The results of these bilateral negotiations are merged with the results of more general negotiations carried out between the candidate country and a working party of the WTO membership to form one overall “accession package”.

The conclusion of this agreement confirms the European Union’s acceptance of the list of concessions offered by the Republic of Seychelles to the EU member states.

The signing of the bilateral agreement took place on the 23rd October 2013 in Geneva, Switzerland between Her Excellency Ms. Vivianne Fock-Tave, Seychelles Ambassador to the European Union, and His Excellency Mr. Angelo Pangratis, Ambassador of the Permanent Mission of the European Union to the WTO.

Seychelles’ remaining bilateral negotiations with the United States and Thailand are ongoing; with the Thailand negotiations having reached the final stage before conclusion.

As part of Seychelles’ efforts to conclude the accession process by first quarter 2014,  its 5th Working Party meeting will be held on the 15th November, 2013 in Geneva, Switzerland.